Stranger Things bullying scene sparked for us 90s kids

Epic fantasy story, cult Netflix TV show plot Stranger Things usually hard to believe. But for me, the roller rink bullying scene in the latest season is an all too real replay of my own experiences in high school.

Spoiler alert: I’m talking about the sad moment where Eleven – trying to fit in as an ordinary teenage girl named Jane – is ganged up on a roller rink by a group of bullies, who surround her, call her name, and throw milkshakes in her face without any adults coming. to intervene.

Eleven (middle) in the latest season of Stranger Things.

Eleven (middle) in the latest season of Stranger Things.Credit:Netflix

Watching the episode curled up on the couch, my husband turned to me in disbelief, exclaiming: “This never happened!” Apparently, parallel dimensions and psychic monsters are fine, but juvenile bullying is going too far!

I wish it never happened, but the sad reality is that I was the victim of a very similar experience on a roller rink; it’s only a decade after fiction Stranger Things The Rink-o-Mania incident was 1986, and I was on the receiving end of a hip and shoulder over a milkshake.

I was on a class trip to the local skate center when a group of girls from my class lined up, one after another, to try to knock me off my skates – in front of my classmates and teacher.

I could see them coming, so I just braced myself and was determined not to fall on my face. One by one, the bullies passed by. But I stood up straight and they just bounced off of me.

Little did I know that experience was my introduction to the sport of roller derby where, 15 years later, I would be a fairly unshakable force on the track as a hindrance. I often think about that incident, skating as my tough derby girl as the “Bleeder of the Pack”. Come to think of it, I could laugh it off. “I wish the girls could see me now,” I thought.

Mel Buttigieg competed in roller derby in his 30s.

Mel Buttigieg competed in roller derby in his 30s.

Like Eleven’s alter ego, Jane, I was summoned and ridiculed without adult intervention. It was a different time then, when people looked away when it came to children and anti-social behavior. The bullying policy hasn’t been a problem and my teachers don’t seem trained enough to handle conflict resolution.

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